In the realm of intimate confessions, many individuals find it easier to admit to past wrongs than to reveal a seemingly personal secret – masturbation within a relationship. Despite the prevailing hush around this topic, sex experts argue that allowing one’s partner to witness self-satisfaction can be the epitome of intimacy.
Unearthing a Sexual Secret:
An incident involving Annette and her husband, Don, sheds light on the common reactions to discovering a partner’s solo escapades. Caught in the act, Don’s spontaneous self-indulgence left Annette grappling with a mix of embarrassment, resentment, and jealousy. The immediate assumption? “I’m obviously not satisfying him,” Annette remarked, entertaining thoughts of potential infidelity.
Historical Stigmas Surrounding Masturbation:
Masturbation has historically faced condemnation, being labeled as the devil’s work, blamed for various ailments from epilepsy to insanity. In the 20th century, it was considered a disorder necessitating treatments ranging from straightjackets to leeches. While society’s perception has evolved, the reluctance to admit to masturbation persists, often associated with immaturity, inadequacy of a partner, or being oversexed.
Dr. Lonnie Barbach, a sex therapist at the University of California School of Medicine, San Francisco, notes an unwritten rule: “you only touch me, and I only touch you.” The taboo emerges when an individual touches themselves, a notion contradicted by therapeutic recommendations of masturbation for addressing sexual difficulties.
Contrary to the myth that coupling signifies the end of self-pleasure, therapists argue that being part of a couple doesn’t require abandoning solo pursuits. Traditional partner sex, though significant, doesn’t overshadow the importance of masturbation. Dr. Patti Britton, a clinical sexologist, emphasizes that masturbation forms the foundation of partner sex.
Show and Tell:
Taking an active role in one’s pleasure through masturbation is hailed as a means to communicate preferences and rhythms that lead to orgasm. Britton asserts that individuals are responsible for their own orgasms, and sharing the experience with a partner enhances intimacy.
An Intimate Act:
While sexual relations often revolve around intercourse, masturbating in front of a partner can be deemed more intimate than the act itself. Vulnerability surfaces, making trust crucial. Couples who engage in shared masturbation report heightened intimacy, finding the forbidden nature of the act intensifies their connection.
Initiating shared masturbation involves open communication. Partners can introduce the idea through erotic roleplay, creating a romantic atmosphere with music, soft lighting, candles, or erotic content. Mutual exploration can be achieved through simultaneous masturbation, using lubricants, or guiding each other’s hands.
Explaining masturbation as a natural expression of sexuality and incorporating it into a relationship can enhance satisfaction and communication. The emphasis is on breaking societal taboos, embracing self-pleasure, and fostering trust and understanding between partners. As Dr. Barbach aptly puts it, if you catch your partner in the act, “Join them.”
In conclusion, the stigma surrounding masturbation within relationships is debunked by sex experts who view it as a pathway to enhanced intimacy. Shared masturbation, often considered more intimate than intercourse, allows for open communication and mutual exploration. Breaking societal taboos and embracing self-pleasure can lead to a more fulfilling and communicative relationship, fostering trust and understanding between partners.